Feature request: Open Scrivener 3 files in the current Windows Release

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summerdown
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Wed Oct 21, 2020 10:50 pm Post

devinganger wrote:L&L's strategy has always been clear -- new format requires the new version of the tools to handle.


Great! I'll just use the new version on Windows...

You see the problem?

Look... I don't want to come across as snippy here. I get this can't be done. I'm just disappointed is all.

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devinganger
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Thu Oct 22, 2020 8:04 am Post

summerdown wrote:
devinganger wrote:L&L's strategy has always been clear -- new format requires the new version of the tools to handle.


Great! I'll just use the new version on Windows...

You see the problem?


Nope. You can download the beta version *today* and use it. You won't even have to provide a license until it's out of beta and fully released. The Windows 2.9.x beta version fully understands v3 files and interoperates seamlessly with the Mac v3 Scrivener release. There are many of us who are using the beta as our regular version of Scrivener for now -- I do this explicitly because I got tired of maintaining side-by-side 1.9.x and beta on my Windows computer and both 2.x and 3.x on my Mac.

There is *so much* that has changed between the versions that it is literally not realistic to expect L&L to backport all that functionality into 1.9.x.
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summerdown
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Fri Oct 23, 2020 2:14 pm Post

devinganger wrote:Nope. You can download the beta version *today* and use it.


If anyone wants me to use unreliable and unfinished software, there's a simple solution: produce a working version.

If the manufacturer of a program isn't willing to go beyond 'beta,' I'm not going to contradict them.

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Sat Oct 24, 2020 6:07 am Post

summerdown wrote:
devinganger wrote:Nope. You can download the beta version *today* and use it.


If anyone wants me to use unreliable and unfinished software, there's a simple solution: produce a working version.

If the manufacturer of a program isn't willing to go beyond 'beta,' I'm not going to contradict them.


The beta is very stable! Very reliable, ‘works’ and just a smallish number of ‘features’ to be squashed.

FYI, the beta process us how one arrives at a ‘working’ version.

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devinganger
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Sat Oct 24, 2020 6:13 am Post

summerdown wrote:
devinganger wrote:Nope. You can download the beta version *today* and use it.


If anyone wants me to use unreliable and unfinished software, there's a simple solution: produce a working version.

If the manufacturer of a program isn't willing to go beyond 'beta,' I'm not going to contradict them.


Then why would you want "unreliable and unfinished software" (e.g. the entire Windows Scrivener codebase that handles v3 projects) to be backported into the 1.9 release? You do realize you're contradicting yourself here -- either the code is mature enough to use (as many of us can attest, having been using the beta exclusively for quite a while now) and is enough of a difference to warrant a major release that breaks backwards compatibility; or it's not mature enough, belongs nowhere near released software.

With all due respect, what you're asking for is for L&L to have invented time travel.
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Sat Oct 24, 2020 8:18 pm Post

devinganger wrote:Then why would you want "unreliable and unfinished software" (e.g. the entire Windows Scrivener codebase that handles v3 projects) to be backported into the 1.9 release?


I'm not asking for that.

devinganger wrote:With all due respect, what you're asking for is for L&L to have invented time travel.


I'm certainly not asking for that! Though, you know, if it was possible, I'd suggest going back in time and kicking over a bowl of bat stew in China...

devinganger wrote:You do realize you're contradicting yourself here -- either the code is mature enough to use (as many of us can attest, having been using the beta exclusively for quite a while now) and is enough of a difference to warrant a major release that breaks backwards compatibility; or it's not mature enough, belongs nowhere near released software.


Or, just possibly... not all the software is at the same level of development. And maybe the file system part is one of the most mature and ready for release parts of that?

Anyway, none of this matters. You seem to be hung up on the method of delivery. I'm a customer and, frankly, I don't care about the method. I just want the result.

That's because I'm not a programmer on the project. I'm simply an end user.

All I would like is for the currently official versions of a particular type of software to interoperate. It's not a huge ask. It's a very standard thing for a program to do.

Now, as it happens I have been a programmer. And I accept we are where we are. But I'm well within a reasonable position here to be able to accept that - and also simultaneously be disappointed that we are where we are.

devinganger wrote:either the code is mature enough to use (as many of us can attest, having been using the beta exclusively for quite a while now)


I have no idea who you are. And I have no idea what sort of software test experience you have. Maybe you're right. And maybe not. What I do know is that I have a simple two-part test for when to use software for things I care about:.

a) Does the manufacturer trust the code enough to make it a production release?
b) Do I trust the manufacturer.

Now I'm pretty clear on point b. I have found L&L to produce stable, well made and incredibly useful software. I am happy to take my money and give it to them for a product and I fully believe that product will be worth while.

Point a, though, is currently lacking. There is no release date for the Windows version, either.

So I'm in limbo. And it's not an unreasonable thing to point out that while the current production version of Windows is what it is, my preference would be for it to interoperate easily with the Mac version.

Anyway, I have no idea why you're arguing here. Here's the form of argument we're having.

Me: I would prefer X.
You: X is hard to do.
Me: I'd still prefer X.
You: You shouldn't.
Me: ???

I think I know what I'd prefer better than you do to be honest.

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kewms
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Sat Oct 24, 2020 9:28 pm Post

I think devinganger's point is that if the code to handle the Scrivener 3 project format is not reliable enough for a production release, then it is *also* not reliable enough to retrofit back into the current Windows release.

That is, the exact same reasons why you are reluctant to use the beta *also* apply to the hypothetical change you are requesting.

As noted up thread, the new project format affects essentially all file manipulation tasks. It's not a matter of flipping a switch.

So it isn't really a matter of what you do or don't prefer. I think we would all prefer that Scrivener 3 emerged from beta and rendered this whole thread moot. We can acknowledge your preference while still observing that it requires a significant independent development effort, probably *delaying* the Scrivener 3 release by diverting resources from it, and therefore is unlikely to happen.

How you choose to respond to that reality is, of course, up to you.

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devinganger
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Sat Oct 24, 2020 10:06 pm Post

kewms wrote:I think devinganger's point is that if the code to handle the Scrivener 3 project format is not reliable enough for a production release, then it is *also* not reliable enough to retrofit back into the current Windows release.


Exactly. Especially where the project format touches every aspect of how Scrivener operates -- it's not like the project format incremented slightly and there's one or two new areas of functionality that aren't exposed without v3. *Every* *basic* *function* in Scrivener is affected. I'm guessing it was probably a fairly big re-write under the hood.

summerdown wrote:All I would like is for the currently official versions of a particular type of software to interoperate. It's not a huge ask. It's a very standard thing for a program to do.


Wishing that the current release versions were able to interoperate is all fine and good. And they do! As clunky of a workflow as it is, Scrivener 3 for Mac *can* export a project back down to v2 format, and when it gets back a v2 project it will convert it back to v3 before working on it.

But that is literally not what you originally asked. You placed a feature request to backport v3 format handling into Scrivener 1.9.x for Windows and that is an entirely different thing that you really shouldn't get your hopes up for. Everyone acknowledges that the current situation isn't ideal -- but the scope of what you asked for (and if that's not what you are really asking for why is it the title of this thread?) is inconsistent with how L&L handles upgrades *and* is a "non-trivial" request.

[quote="summerdown']I have no idea who you are. And I have no idea what sort of software test experience you have. Maybe you're right. And maybe not. What I do know is that I have a simple two-part test for when to use software for things I care about:.

a) Does the manufacturer trust the code enough to make it a production release?
b) Do I trust the manufacturer.
[/quote]

And at this point, the beta is officially in "Release Candidate" stage. You have access to the beta forums, you have access to the release notes, and you have access to the beta software. You literally don't have to trust me or any of the other regulars who are here who are talking about their experiences in using the beta on a regular basis (many of us *before* it became a Release Candidate) and interoperating with the other versions of Scrivener -- you can see what the aggregate opinions and issues are and you can *test them yourself* to see if you are comfortable moving forward at this time or want to wait for the RC label to become a release label. A lot of us are more than willing to talk to you and work with you -- we're just customers too, and we are pretty passionate about this product -- and we can help test and answer your concerns. Many of us do in fact have backgrounds in IT, development, and software testing. There's a pretty dedicated cabal of us who pour over each bug report and try to confirm it and distill it down to its essence so that the devs can more easily repro and fix them. You can be part of that community while you're testing the software to your satisfaction and maybe help everyone get to that v3 release date sooner!
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summerdown
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Sat Oct 24, 2020 10:57 pm Post

devinganger wrote:But that is literally not what you originally asked... (and if that's not what you are really asking for why is it the title of this thread?)

Oh come on. You can read as well as I can. This is a bad faith answer.

I asked for a feature, had it explained why it would be difficult, then asked if the reverse could be true. I'm not stuck on a single solution here.

devinganger wrote:if that's not what you are really asking for

You know exactly what I'm 'really asking for,' particularly as the thread isn't very long and I'm pretty sure you've read all of it. No matter how much you pretend you haven't.

I will, however, quote myself to make it easier for you as you seem to be having issues working it out:
summerdown wrote:In that case, I would like to request the feature that all active versions open and save the same version of the file.


Look. I get it's hard. But trying to convince me it's hard isn't helping. I repeat. I'm an end user. I don't care whether it's hard. That's, frankly, someone else's problem.

Also, to be honest, it's L&L's fault it's hard. They chose the product roadmap here. A different project roadmap would have not changed such a fundamental thing until it was ready to happen on all platforms.

I don't want to get annoyed at L&L here. I will repeat: I like scrivener. I like the program and find it very useful.

But you, devinganger, your answers are just pissing me off.

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Sun Oct 25, 2020 6:20 am Post

summerdown wrote:I would like to request the feature that all active versions open and save the same version of the file.

You got the answer "that won’t happen" and an explanation of why.
End of story.
Right? :)

PS. If you have coding background and are a Win user, you should know that the project isn’t a file. ;)
I am a user, writing non-fiction and science, using:
* Mac Scrivener 3 on a Macbook 12”, MacBook Pro 13”, and iMac 27”, running different OS.
* iOS Scrivener 1 on an iPhone 11 Pro, iPad Air 9.7”, and iPad Pro 12.9”, all running the latest iOS

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devinganger
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Sun Oct 25, 2020 8:22 am Post

summerdown wrote:I will, however, quote myself to make it easier for you as you seem to be having issues working it out:
summerdown wrote:In that case, I would like to request the feature that all active versions open and save the same version of the file.



Well, then, you're in luck. As I said before:

devinganger wrote:Wishing that the current release versions were able to interoperate is all fine and good. And they do! As clunky of a workflow as it is, Scrivener 3 for Mac *can* export a project back down to v2 format, and when it gets back a v2 project it will convert it back to v3 before working on it.


And as for this:

summerdown wrote:But you, devinganger, your answers are just pissing me off.


I am sorry to hear that. I am trying to be helpful. But at the same time, you need to be aware that what you appear to be asking for (both originally and modified) would, if L&L decided to do it, actually delay work on finishing the release of v3 in order to make an exception to their established pattern of how upgrades have worked over the lifetime of Scrivener. In essence, your request would actively hurt the rest of us. And that doesn't seem cool -- and I doubt it's what you intended!

At any rate, as Lunk pointed out, you've gotten an official answer from L&L.
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Sun Oct 25, 2020 10:40 pm Post

summerdown wrote:Anyway, none of this matters. You seem to be hung up on the method of delivery. I'm a customer and, frankly, I don't care about the method. I just want the result.

The method: Use the beta.

The result: full compatibility.

Oh, wait, you DO care about the method, after all?

summerdown wrote:I have no idea who you are. And I have no idea what sort of software test experience you have. Maybe you're right. And maybe not. What I do know is that I have a simple two-part test for when to use software for things I care about:.

a) Does the manufacturer trust the code enough to make it a production release?
b) Do I trust the manufacturer.

Now I'm pretty clear on point b. I have found L&L to produce stable, well made and incredibly useful software. I am happy to take my money and give it to them for a product and I fully believe that product will be worth while.

On a, L&L are on record saying "except for compile, yeah".

So do you trust them, or do you not trust them?
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Computer scientist. Software engineer. Scifi writer. Scuba diver.

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Mon Oct 26, 2020 7:46 am Post

Hmmm.

Whilst my heart is normally on the side of the defence in these sorts of posts, I have to see this sounds like a perfectly reasonable request to me.

My gut is that if LL had known about the time lag between Mac and Windows moving to the v3 format, they’d have put a v1 version of Windows out with the new format if at all possible. Depending on how far away a stable release of Win3 is, I’d still argue that a slight delay to v3 in order to get the cross-platform format in v1 would be sensible. If there’s a *chance* Win3 was over 6 months away, say.

Of course, this is all predicated on the premise that the v3 format is *capable* of working with a v1-2 compile system. If it isn’t, then it’s fair to say that LL is already doing everything possible to get that platform interoperability as soon as possible (and has provided a couple of work round options via v2 export / v3 beta in the meantime).
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Mon Oct 26, 2020 11:53 am Post

pigfender wrote:Of course, this is all predicated on the premise that the v3 format is *capable* of working with a v1-2 compile system. If it isn’t, then it’s fair to say that LL is already doing everything possible to get that platform interoperability as soon as possible (and has provided a couple of work round options via v2 export / v3 beta in the meantime).


I think it's safe to say that trying to retrofit the new format into the old release version while keeping the old compile, notes, etc. would be slower and worse than just continuing the effort to finish the v3 release. The file format and other upgrades go hand in hand and were designed together -- the devs would be having to spend additional time designing *and* testing all sorts of stop-gap solutions to problems that were never envisioned. At least the v2 to v3 upgrade code is a one-time (per project) thing and even then, it loses quite a bit of work from v2 projects -- and users need to spend time working with the upgraded projects -- because of the lack of 1:1 feature parity in major areas.

It would also be a PR nightmare. Think users are pissed now? Wait until they *can* open v3 files in 1.9.x *but they can't edit information for features that don't exist in 1.9.x.*
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Mon Oct 26, 2020 1:49 pm Post

I don’t think anything is a safe assumption when it come to major tech development projects. But anyway, my point was, there’s a trade off of time to implement interoperability for official releases via v3 versus v1 update. Depending on expected time to implement both, the most user friendly answer is different. I have no idea what the time cost would be of either option.
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